Five babies have been born for every new home that has been built in Rotherham since 2012, deepening the Rotherham housing shortage.

How did I get to this figure? Let’s take a look at the most up-to-date data for the the Rotherham Council area. There are two graphs below. The first examines the numbers of properties built vs. the number of babies born together. The second shows the corresponding ratio of the two aforementioned metrics:

It can be seen that in 2016, 5.09 babies had been born in Rotherham for every home that had been built in the five years to the end of 2016 (the most up to date data). Interestingly, that ratio nationally was 2.9 babies to every home built in the 50s and 2.4 in the 70s. I have seen the unaudited 2017 statistics and the picture isn’t any better! (I will share those when they are released later in the year).

This discovery is an important foundation for my concerns about the future of the Rotherham property market. When you consider the battle that the twenty and thirty somethings of today are facing in order to buy their first home and get on the Rotherham property ladder, the future becomes all the more alarming. Ultimately, this will mean the babies being born now, who will become the next generation’s first-time buyers will come up against even bigger competition from a greater number of their peers unless we move to long term fixes to the housing market, instead of the short term fixes that successive Governments have done since the 1980s.

An unprecedented and unbelievably difficult position

Our children, and their children, will be placed in an unprecedented and unbelievably difficult position when they want to buy their first home unless decisive action is taken. You see, it doesn’t help that with life expectancy growing year on year, there is also excessive pressure on the availability of homes to live in.

Owning your home is a measure many Brits to aspire to. The only long-term measure that will help is the building of more new homes on a scale not seen since the 50s and 60s. Essentially, we need to aim to at least double the number of homes that are built annually.

In the meantime, what does this mean for Rotherham landlords and homeowners? Well the demand for rental properties in Rotherham in the short term will remain high and until the rate of building grows substantially, rents will remain strong and correspondingly, property values will remain robust.